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Chip Kelly loves Michael Vick, but Vick ready to move on


The Eagles cleaned out their lockers on Monday, which may have been the last time that quarterback Michael Vick was in the room as an active member of the team.

Vick’s set for free agency in March and he hasn’t been shy about his desire to find a starting job in 2014. That won’t come in Philadelphia, where Chip Kelly affirmed that Nick Foles is the starting quarterback on Monday. Kelly also praised Vick and suggested that a return to the backup job in Philly is possible.

“I love Michael Vick. That guy’s awesome,” Kelly said, via the South Jersey Courier-Post. “Unfortunately, he got hurt, and that gave an opportunity to another guy. It’s not like Michael got benched. How he handled it, how he helped Nick through the process, it indicates the kind of person he is. That didn’t go unnoticed.”

Vick reiterated that he’d be open to such a return as a fallback, but not before saying once again that he wants to start while speaking about his time with the Eagles in the past tense.

“It’s hard to sum up my time here. Everything has been so surreal and has happened so abruptly,” Vick said, via Philadelphia Magazine. “The thing I do know is I appreciate the fans, I appreciate this organization, I appreciate the relationships and the teammates I’ve been able to [have] in this locker room. There’s a lot of guys in here I’ll always keep in contact with and I’ll consider my brothers.”

The veteran free agent market for quarterbacks isn’t a deep one, with Josh McCown, Chad Henne and Josh Freeman joining Vick as available players with recent starting experience. Whether that leads to a better opportunity than he has in Philly remains to be seen, but the Eagles will certainly have to plan as if Vick isn’t coming back when the offseason gets underway.